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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

Visalia CSA Students Excel in Internship

February 1, 2012

When Visalia Business Division Manager Jeff Nevins asked how the SJVC interns were performing in their efforts for the Tulare County Office of Education (TCOE), supervisor Linda Horsting replied, “They have been a blessing!”

High praise for the squad of SJVC Computer Systems Administration (CSA) students volunteering their time since mid-October at TCOE’s Equipment Repair Station (ERS) in northwest Visalia.

TCOE Associate Gary Cordell approached SJVC in early 2011 with the idea for a partnership with the college.  The ERS, which serves many of the county’s smaller public school districts and independent schools, found itself buried in repairs needed for computers, monitors, printers, and overhead projectors.  SJVC instructor Michael Johnson was looking for additional hands-on training for CSA students.

“It was a perfect marriage,” stated Johnson, “TCOE needed help and could provide training–and we have the enthusiastic students, ready to learn.”  Each intern works two afternoon hours daily, four days per week, over a fifteen week term.  Current participants include Lance Cordero, Jonathan Renteria, Carlos Moreno, Alex Torres, Steven Castaneto, Anselmo Gutierrez, Miguel Martinez, and Richard Schoenfeld.

While many CSA students were interested in participating, applicants were required to have completed their first term at SJVC, and have attained a minimum 3.25 GPA.  Additionally, students needed a record of 90% plus attendance, submit a resume, and to pass a rigorous interview with Mr. Nevins, Mr. Johnson, and Career Services Advisor Erika Bassett.

“TCOE is offering our students an outstanding opportunity to gain real-world, hands-on experience, so we take the selection process for student volunteers very seriously,” Ms. Bassett commented. “We want to make sure the students who participate in the program serve as positive representatives of San Joaquin Valley College.  Our eligibility requirements have been set in an effort to reward those who have worked diligently to achieve high academic standing, and to encourage those who are setting a higher standard for themselves.”

SJVC is tremendously grateful to TCOE, especially Gary Cordell and Linda Horsting, not only for the opportunity but for helping our future CSA graduates build a strong, technical foundation for their budding careers.   The success of the program has encouraged both organizations to envision it as long-term.

As Ms. Horsting pointed proudly to a nearly empty rack of computer printers and parts, she said, “Before your students came on board this rack was so full that we hardly could add any more to it.”

Current plans call for this successful program to continue.

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